Published on June 17th, 2014 |
by Sadia Aden
Is the World Cup beneficial to the young people of Brazil?
Millions of people have flocked to Brazil with what is said to be the largest World Cup event ranging across 12 cities. The world is now gripped with a month long fever of football, the cries and cheers of nationalistic support for teams are set to ring out across different nations.
This electric tournament is being held in Brazil – a nation famously known for their dedicated passion for the game. With all of their love for the game of ‘futebol’, the offer by FIFA to host the famous event seemed logical.
Yet according to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center in April, more than half of Brazilians at 61% believe that hosting the competition is bad for the country. With a large 62% of young college people maintaining a positive outlook on the protests that occurred in 2013.
This unenthusiastic response by Brazilians comes at a surprise, as the expected revenue from hosting the World Cup is set to bring in £8.1 billion which would greatly benefit Brazil’s economy.
Thus it must be asked why do so many Brazilians, especially young people who are leading the waves of protests are discontent towards hosting their favourite cultural pastime?
First of all, Brazil’s investment in the World cup stadiums and infrastructure was at an excessive £7.6 billion is said to have been the most spent on the competition since it began in 1930.
Brazilians had been told most of the funding for the investment would come from the revenue of its investors. Instead, the government has used a large amount of public money at the expense of public services like education and healthcare which Brazilians argue need significant improvements.
In the instance of education, Brazilians argue that the current standard severely favours those who are privately educated as there is very little public funding. This has contributed to the high number of non-attendance and school dropout rates.
The fact that more than a third of the 15 -24 year old youth population are without jobs or education, coupled with the social problems like the economic inequality of the poor and rich, has greatly exacerbated the plight of young Brazilians especially from poorer backgrounds.
Alongside this, speculations of apparent high levels of corruption from government officials has ultimately led to serious mistrust between the Brazilian people and their government.
As the questions raised weren’t addressed nor answered, it spurred a series of massive protests led by the affected youth which first took place in the summer of 2013 with flag burnings and calls for impeachment for the President, Ms. Dilma Rousseff.
Ultimately, Brazil is predicted to be one of the most prosperous new economic powers of the 21st century attracting large companies and investors globally. But these problems could mean disaster, as it heads towards a future where the majority of its young workforce population are uneducated, unskilled and living in poverty.
These protests signal an opportunity for Brazil to fix their internal problems as the growing global awareness of the protests may prompt the government to act, especially in 2015 as the general democratic elections take place for the new President.
If the government learns from the difficulties of the World Cup, it could mean success when hosting the Olympics in two years from now. Otherwise we should prepare for more backlash from its citizens who demand effective solutions to their social issues.
Nevertheless, these two large world events are set to pave the way for a different future, a more fairer and equal one for a newer generation of young Brazilians.
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